U.S.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Hits Back at ‘Far-Right Former Governor’ Scott Walker Over Marginal Tax Rates

Going after Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Twitter is an…interesting…choice because the New York Democrat is, well, just so good at tweeting. Yet former Republican Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker did just that on Tuesday. 

Ocasio-Cortez has suggested taxing the top earners in the U.S.—people making $10 million—at rates as high as 70 percent to fund a Green New Deal to fight climate change. Under a progressive-style tax plan from the ’60s, Ocasio-Cortez has said, people earning up to $75,000 now would pay about 10 to 15 percent in taxes. 

“That doesn’t mean all $10 million are taxed at an extremely high rate," Ocasio-Cortez said in a interview with CBS's 60 Minutes. "But it means that as you climb up this ladder, you should be contributing more."

Walker mocked Ocasio-Cortez's idea on Twitter. He posted: "Explaining tax rates before Reagan to 5th graders: 'Imagine if you did chores for your grandma and she gave you $10. When you got home, your parents took $7 from you.' The students said: 'That’s not fair!' Even 5th graders get it." 

Ocasio-Cortez was quick to point out that wasn't exactly right. "Explaining marginal taxes to a far-right former Governor: Imagine if you did chores for abuela & she gave you $10," she posted in response. "When you got home, you got to keep it, because it’s only $10. Then we taxed the billionaire in town because he’s making tons of money underpaying the townspeople."

Beyond the world of Twitter jabs, polling has shown Ocasio-Cortez's idea is widely popular. A survey released this week from The Hill-HarrisX found that a comfortable majority—59 percent—approved of raising the highest tax bracket to 70 percent. Somewhat surprisingly, 45 percent of Republicans even approved of the idea. 

The recently ousted Walker, who has held elected office for a quarter of a century, reportedly has plans to go on the speaking circuit to advocate for taking power out of the federal government's hands. He also would not rule out running for office, or even the governorship, again.

"If Republicans are going to make the case, it’s probably worth, at least for governor, having a new face, a new name on the ballot for that," he told the Associated Press about running for his old position. "But you never rule anything out."

Editor's Pick